Category Archives: entertainment

And it opened up my eyes

I was in my room the other night re-arranging my match collection when I heard something really beautiful: a woman was walking down my street, possibly drunk and loudly singing “The Sign.” It was an amazing experience. Like “Truly, Madly, Deeply” and Robyn’s “Show Me Love,” “The Sign”  is a song that deserves our attention and adoration, and should be played loudly at 7am on a Friday morning while one rubs ice cubes on one’s eyelids and fake contemplates ironing their shirt. (I am also excited to announce my new blog feature, of which this is the first installment: throw-back song Fridays, or just, really amazing song Fridays!)

Like most people born in the mid-1980s, Ace of Base changed my life for the better. And I must give a shout-out to my stepmother, who took me to the Dartmouth Mall in fourth grade and in the same glorious afternoon bought me both a pair of suede navy blue Puma’s at Foot Locker and the Ace of Base CD from Strawberries Music. (Did we also go to the food court for Taco Bell? That might have been too much joy.) I can’t recall what I had for lunch on Wednesday, but I so remember walking on that dirty mall floor, staring at my new kicks as I clutched my plastic-wrapped CD and thought, “So this is what it means to be cool—Pumas and an Ace of Base CD. Life, I’ve made it!”

Of course, it’s all been downhill since that moment, but the beautiful spirit of youtube never fails to amaze me:

A few thoughts after viewing:

1. How does this video only have 67,000 views? I am ashamed of our country.

2. When are extra-large pleather vests going to come back in style for women?

3. So much making out in the 90s! I am sheepish!

4. (Wait, these lyrics are actually really deep….)

omg what should the song be next Friday…? TRL me!
I’m praying for Tommy Gisele!!!

xo

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Oh Lana, Lana, Lana….

A few days ago I didn’t know who Lana Del Rey was. Now I do, so I’m just gonna go ahead and add my two cents about that fact, cause I’m pretty sure that’s why Al Gore invented the internet. And all I can say is, I am getting old, people. And bitter. Because I mean, really? REALLY?

Watching those SNL performances, I think I felt how most people did when they saw them: bored/very confused. It was, like, wait am I watching a sketch? Is that Kristin Wiig impersonating a drag queen on quaaludes? Or did Emma Roberts just put on a wig and huff some serious testosterone? Because if it’s none of the above, I’m not sure that that person is okay. And someone needs to get her off that stage immediately.

I don’t want to be too mean. If I was singing on SNL I’d be peeing my lacy white dress and twirling around in awkward circles too, but hey, that’s why I’m not booked to be the musical guest next week, in’it! Also, I get pissed off when I’m super naïve. Ex: After watching the LDR trainwreck, I showed my boyfriend some of her performance. Within ten seconds of watching the clip he shrugged his shoulders and said, “Yeah, there’s no way that chick’s father or uncle or something isn’t some seriously well-connected millionaire.” Then he walked away. Oh, please I thought, don’t be so paranoid and jaded! This isn’t Enemy of the State or something! This is real life! And then a little light googling, and …uh, he’s right! I never think that stuff, and then I’m like…HEY that’s not FAIR! That’s now how it works! Talent is what gets you ahead in life! She’s not a phony with connections, she was just…really nervous!

Which brings me to Susan Tedeschi. Probably never heard of her. That’s fine, she doesn’t really care about that. But I was lucky enough to see her perform live this weekend. And America (well, my twelve readers) I think you’ll agree that that is a musician. (Seriously, click the link.) That is talent. That is SNL-worthy, and also, that is a WOMAN. I repeat: A WOMAN. Not a hyper-packaged, hyper-sexualized, hipstamatic-I-crawl-around-with-tigers-“vintage”-aesthetic spectacle, and certainly not a girl who was born in 1986 and has already had plastic surgery in order to get more youtube clicks. (Yes, Lana Del Rey had her lips done. She’s 25, people. TWENTY-FIVE! I just used letters to spell her age out that’s how sad this makes me. What is wrong with all of us??) Susan Tedeschi could eat LDR for breakfast. Not that she’d want to. But still.

Obviously all this is nothing new. In some ways, Lana Del Ray is just the Britney of 2012, except that dancing around the lockers in your sports bra and jogging pants doesn’t really cut it as “edgy” anymore. But you can at least do crunches and scrub your bathtub to Britney’s, cough, music. I’m not sure what LDR’s “music” is for yet, though I imagine it provides a nice soundtrack for when you feel like burning your forearms with candle wax or being depressed in a sexy-vintagey sort of way.

But hey, to each their own. I just hope this chick gets the collagen out of her face and goes on a very long vacation. Also, she needs to dump that boyfriend.

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How is this commercial ten years old?

This is a great ad. UBER intense, and I like it. Also, I just got back from the UK and I’m pretty sure the whole over-taking trailer by rocky shore and yelling at watch whilst late is a very British thing to do. I guess these Americans are getting married on the English coast or something, so it all makes sense—very deep, very ominous, very techno-religious-music Godfathery sense.

Does this ad make you want to buy a Jetta? I vote yes. Ten years old, and it’s working for me. GOOD STUFF.

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Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure.

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Holy Home-made Oreo.

Last night, I went to a see a musical at The Boston Conservatory called “Baby.” (Free shows in Boston performed by really talented people: hidden gem alert!!) My co-worker, Ansley, is a student there, and she was one of the leads in “Baby.” And, surprise, she was totally fantastic, as was the whole cast. (Ansley has a Disney princess voice, and really blue eyes, and I may now have to ask her to sing me to sleep doing all the “Little Mermaid” songs one night.) However, shockingly enough, the show titled “Baby” was about having babies—or trying and not being able to: GAH—and it was REALLY TERRIFYING AT TIMES. (It’s one thing to see a “deep” play that freaks you out about this stuff, or just something really scary and depressing in general,but when people are singing and dancing and snapping in your face about it, you’re like woah woah woah whatever happened to taking a load off at night and seeing something totally mindless like “Macbeth”?) And yet, the show was great, and everything worked out perfectly in the end. (Duh.) I definitely look forward to seeing more shows at BoCo, and encourage you to venture on over there as well.

AND THEN, the night got even better. When I got home from the theatuh with OptimistFreak, my other roommate Mike Tomlin (seen below)

had left the following note on our kitchen-counter: “Left over from my co-workers baby shower: home-made Oreos from Flour bakery.”

(They’re so beautiful, right?)

We had to eat them right away, even with our coats still on. And it was pretty life-changing, I’m not going to lie. Yes, I know everyone and their mother already knows that Joanne Chang is the cat’s pajamas and puts crack in all her baked-goods and FLOUR is the greatest place on earth and she makes all Bostonians super proud with her national success, but somehow I had yet to ever taste any of her food…And OH MY GOD those oreos were the greatest things I’ve ever had. (EVER—I was practically crying in a ball on my kitchen floor as I swallowed my last bite.) I can not wait to go to FLOUR soon. (Meaning today.) (But to which location?? And what should I wear???). I will battle off the heathen crowds banging at the door, eat a gourmet sandwich and a pile of cookies, and make like everyone else in the world as I take iPhone pictures of everything in site. Sounds glorious, right?

(I am so thankful Mike Tomlin is a good sharer, and also that her co-worker got pregnant and had a shower. Yay for “Baby” and babies!)

Happy Tuesday

xo

(Photo of life-changing oreos from penandfork.com)

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St. Patty’s Day

Hopefully everyone had a good Saint Patrick’s Day yesterday, and enjoyed the beautiful BEAUTIFUL day. I got to spend some time with my boyfriend’s grandparents (we went to Amrheins for lunch) and it was really crowded and green and beer-filled and nice. (Plus, my boyfriend’s grandfather always tells good stories, and, as you will see, his grandmother can still somehow make bright green look incredibly glamorous. And probably a paper bag too, if she wanted.) I also meet this guy smoking a cigar when I walked out my door first thing in the morning, and had to take his picture like a creep. (Though I did ask this time.) His name is Charlie, he said he’s Italian-American but loves the holiday, and how can you not appreciate the mustache and the Celtics gear?

Missing the parade on Sunday, which makes me sad, but hopefully the rest of the weekend is just as warm and fun. Boston isn’t a bad place to be for this holiday, eh?

xo

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Me Love the Movies

Nothing makes me quite as happy as walking through the park on a freezing winter night, knowing that I will soon be inside the warm and magical world of AMC Loews Boston Common, spending all my pocket money (eh…) on popcorn and a blue slushie. Truly, this image warms my heart.

The AMC Loews Boston Common Cinema holds many memories for me: it’s where my boyfriend and I had one of our first dates. (Well, it was more like a “hang-out”, let’s be honest. Also, we saw Revolutionary Road that day, probably the worst movie in the history of mankind you could possibly EVER see on a first date. People of the opposite sex—or really anyone who is romantically interested in any sex or human being or the idea of love and happiness—should never see that movie together.) And this theatre is where I ran into David Spade when he was in town shooting Grown-Ups awhile back, and when I say I “ran into” him, I literally turned the corner with my popcorn on my into The Hangover, and bumped into David Spade. He was chilling in his leather coat and talking to the six-foot tall blonde supermodel lookin’ lady at his side, and all I could squeak out into his face was a whisper of, “Oh my god…it’s David Spade.” Sadly, that was the only thing I could think to say. He was like, “Yeah…it is,” (big smirk) and kept walking.

But really, who cares about David. This giant movie food display is my favorite part about this theatre, and it never laughs in my face or hangs out with supermodels!  Instead, it makes me feel like a tiny cool ant who goes to the movies all the time, and it reminds me of one of my favorite movies ever: Honey, I Shrunk The Kids.

Giant popcorn=sigh….

(And if it’s true that these displays are all over Loews country-wide, I don’t wanna hear it—this is a special movie theatre god-dammit!)

Oh, and True Grit was awesome, right? King’s Speech Schmings Smeech.

Hope everyone is staying warm.

xo

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Taj at the Wilbur

I went to see Taj Mahal at the Wilbur Theatre last Thursday night. I’d never been to the Wilbur before, or seen Taj live. I took my boyfriend, for Valentine’s Day, since he’s the one who introduced me to Taj Mahal, and also because I really wanted to see the concert: heeellooo total win-win gift situation.

The Wilbur is in Boston’s theatre district. (Well, you probably knew that already…) I don’t spend too much time around this area of the city, but I’d like to more. It has a distinct character: there’s the blend into Chinatown; the random bars and pizza places and skinny Emerson kids smoking their ciggs; the trash on the sidewalk and that semi-seedy late 1980’s aura still hanging around, but it’s blended in with all the new development and the fancy-pants W hotel and the billboards and the great venues, which add there sparkle and make me want to go to the THEATUH all the time. It’s a mish-mash, and I like it.

I also really liked the Wilbur, inside and out. I did some perusing on Yelp before I bought the tickets, and apparently people have some heated things to say about the theatre as a comedy venue, but as a place to see a concert, it was lovely: ornate gold leaf decorations, chandeliers, red-velvet upholstered seats—very fourth-grade trip to the ballet (Zeiterion Theatre anybody?), and I’m a grandma, so I secretly sort of like when you have no choice but to sit down at concerts. (Standing and bopping your head and arms around is so awkward sometimes, right?) They also had a really strict no cell-phone policy, and not just about photos—you couldn’t have your cell-phone out at all, and them security ladies weren’t messing around. But I sort of liked it. A whole sea of faces all night, and everyone actually paying attention to the music and the same thing, and not frowning or snorting while clicking glowy devices perched on their laps. (It was like we were, gasp, sharing the same experience or something…)

Outside

Inside

My boyfriend and I started out the night by getting a drink at Jacob Wirth’s (a whole post devoted to that wonderful place coming soon), and then when we got to the venue, a seating attendant opened the door right as we were going in and spilled my boyfriend’s beer on him, and she was all “I’m sooooo sorry, oh silly me!” and then went and got him another beer, even though he’d only lost 30% of his drank. So, like, WE GOT A FREE BEER. (At the time, it was REALLY exciting….) The night continued on a great track when I got to hear the woman behind us, who must have been sixty-five, tell her husband that he was just like Phil Dunphy, and he responded by saying “Is that the one married to the one with the tits?” A few minutes later, I thought I smelled weed. (Like I said, huge grandma alert.) I turned to my boyfriend to ask him if he smelled it too, and he was like, “Caroline, a girl with dreadlocks just sat down two seats from us. That is what you are smelling.” Pause. “You are a grade-A clown.”

Speaking of romance, I already mentioned that I was introduced to Taj’s music by said boyfriend; it was right when we started dating, and he sent me a mix CD in the mail with a bunch of artists on it, and some of Taj’s live stuff was included. (Sigh.) I fell in love with the music (um, how could you not?), and so I knew I’d enjoy the concert, but I was still blown away by the show, and I’m sure anyone who’s seen Taj live knows what I mean. Sure, his personality comes across in any recording, but seeing him and hearing him in the flesh is a whole different story—I mean the dude is pushing seventy, but he’s still incredibly charismatic, and so formidable, and just alive….he must be 6’3” or 6’4”, and he struts out on stage wearing his Hawaiian shirt and his fedora and then he plays his heart out while making these incredibly funny semi-lewd faces and gestures, and he is just filled with so much soul, and, energy, and happiness, and sex, and it was a joy to be in the company of his talent and life force for a bit. We had such a good time that I think my boyfriend even forgot about the Perk trade for an hour.

(Ouch, Charlie.)

For the encore, Taj brought his daughter out on stage, who had actually been the singer in the opening act—though no one had had any idea—so it was a really nice surprise. (GIRL CAN SIIING.) They sang “Lovin’ in My Baby’s Eyes” which happens to be my favorite Taj song, and it was amazing, and I was sort of feeling my beers at that point, and maybe teared up at how sweet it was to have them singing to each other, and my boyfriend was like, “I can’t take you anywhere in public.”

But hey, I took him somewhere in public this time, so totally allowed.

Here is Taj singing another one of his hits “Queen Bee”, in 2008. I suggest you watch it and think about warm weather and relaxing on the beach with your love, and not this gross slush-rain-muck…

xo

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Boston: so french right now.

Holy cultural alert: I went to a concert last night with my roommates. (My roommates are amazing, and one is blonde, and one is brunette, and one is a bit shorter, and one is a bit taller, and they will henceforth be known as Mike Tomlin and OptimistFreak on le blog, seeing that the blonde is from Pittsburgh and a die-hard Steelers fan (go figure), and the later is, well, a bundle of happy energy, and a make-me-want-to-not-be-not-a-morning-person, and overall just a mind-blower of seeing the bright side—so, a freak in a good way.)

(Also, the concert wasn’t last night, it was last week, but I’ve been busy and haven’t been able to edit this post, and it sounds better in the intro to say I went last night. Saaaaarry!)

We went to a Yann Tiersen concert. Yann is French. Heard of him? I hadn’t either, until the mother of the family I used to sit for introduced me to his music a few years ago. (It’s good music to have toddlers crawl over your legs to.) Tiersen composed the Amelie soundtrack, which is a spectacular album, a-bring-this-with-you-to-a-deserted-island-if-you-only-have-one-musical-score-to-bring-with-you-sort-of-masterpiece, and I suggest you stop reading this post and head to itunes NOW and buy it, because the music on that soundtrack covers the whole spectrum of human emotion somehow, and it’s glorious and special; there are happy songs and sad songs and strange songs and clown songs and love songs and alone songs….This track below is probably the most popular song from the album, and the most beautiful; it’s truly so gorgeous that I don’t have words, other than the fact that human beings can make this stuff blows me mind! Uh, piano music slays me. This song is like a sad, beautiful picnic. It is, specifically, a sepia-toned old home video of me and James McAvoy at a picnic, or by the ocean, and I am being played by Keira Knightley.

It’s amazing, right? Again and again and again. And then there’s stuff like the track below, which is a great ditty to put a purple wig and over-alls on to, and bake some cupcakes, and clean your room:

Back to Boston. The concert was at the Royale, on Tremont Street. Have you been there? I had not. I’m not very cool. But the place was vwunderful. Sadly, I did not get a good photo of the venue, so googleimages will have to suffice.

(Well, this is the lobby. I didn’t like any pictures of the inside of the venue that google was offering me.)

The space is beautiful and intimate. Good sound quality. Stand, or sit on some couches. And the bartender was nice. Yann was great; he and his band are hard to categorize: melancholy, at-times-heavy-metal, violin master, drum master, poetic, very French, always trippy, occasionally pop? Yeah, I don’t know either, but I suggest listening to some of his album Dust Road as well. Different than Amelie, for sure. Mike Tomlin took some pics of the concert, so here is one below. I am excited to go back to another show at Royale. It’s a real Boston gem fo sho!

xo

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She’s from Cambridge!!!!

Doesn’t Mindy look so beautiful? (This is at the S.A.G. awards. Her glow is clearly from all those time she waited on the platform at Harvard and stared down the oncoming trains, wondering, “Ashmont?” or “Braintree?”)

So, yeah, Mindy grew up in Cambridge. Went to BB&N. Then to Dartmouth. Apparently this is all old news:

Whatever, I’m still excited. SUPER-EXCITED. Guys, we’re all practically BFF with Mindy!!! Yay for Tuesday!

xo

Claire

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